We’re runnin’ on the sun!

Great news here in our little corner of the Monadnock Region : we are now sourcing our electrical power from a 27 solar panel array. Woo! So far everything has been working without a hitch. We are really pleased with the results. We are confident that it will be a worthwhile investment. It is gratifying to know that each time I switch on the sewing machine or press up a hem with the iron that it is now powered by solar energy.

I’ve been working on log cabin placemats lately. Just yesterday I finished up green/ivory mats to restock my Etsy shop, and today I began weaving a black and ivory variation. I like the rhythm of the pattern and the breaks from weaving when it is time to hemstitch the ends of each mat.

In addition to weaving, I finished a new print-at-home wooly scarf pattern for rigid heddle weavers since my last post. The scarf features Harrisville Designs “Highland” wool (which I use in cones, not skeins). Also, I learned how to set rivets! I use rivets to secure the leather band on my new key fobs made from an assortment of handwoven fabric. They’re really fun to make. I especially enjoy the riveting part since I get to use a hammer. Here is a photo of some fobs that I made recently:

I’ve been working hard this winter to polish my sewing skills in the handbag area. I’ve learned a lot! I made a few little bags when I first started out with my Etsy shop back in 2008 and while they were nice, they fell short in the structure area, truth be told. I have done many samples using commercially woven fabrics of different weights (i.e. canvas vs. quilting cotton) and have experimented with different kinds of interfacing, fleeces, and foam for stability. I’m ready to take the next step and work with my handwoven fabrics. Yes! Today I took a big leap and cut and fused (and fused again) some of my handwoven ivory lace fabric:

Huck lace clutch-to-be

I’ve done an awful lot of fiddling around with things like magnetic snap strength, to-pipe-or-not-to-pipe, lining fabric choices, and so on. It feels like a step in the right direction to just cut some fabric at this point. We will see how things shake out in the end.

Be safe and well, friends.

Kate K.

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